git-add [-n] [-v] [-f] [--interactive | -i] [--] <file>…


All the changed file contents to be committed together in a single set of changes must be "added" with the add command before using the commit command. This is not only for adding new files. Even modified files must be added to the set of changes about to be committed.

This command can be performed multiple times before a commit. The added content corresponds to the state of specified file(s) at the time the add command is used. This means the commit command will not consider subsequent changes to already added content if it is not added again before the commit.

The git status command can be used to obtain a summary of what is included for the next commit.

This command can be used to add ignored files with -f (force) option, but they have to be explicitly and exactly specified from the command line. File globbing and recursive behaviour do not add ignored files.

Please see gitlink:git-commit[1] for alternative ways to add content to a commit.



Files to add content from. Fileglobs (e.g. *.c) can be given to add all matching files. Also a leading directory name (e.g. dir to add dir/file1 and dir/file2) can be given to add all files in the directory, recursively.


Don’t actually add the file(s), just show if they exist.


Be verbose.


Allow adding otherwise ignored files.

-i, --interactive

Add modified contents in the working tree interactively to the index.


This option can be used to separate command-line options from the list of files, (useful when filenames might be mistaken for command-line options).


The optional configuration variable core.excludesfile indicates a path to a file containing patterns of file names to exclude from git-add, similar to $GIT_DIR/info/exclude. Patterns in the exclude file are used in addition to those in info/exclude. See repository layout.


git-add Documentation/\\*.txt

Adds content from all \*.txt files under Documentation directory and its subdirectories.

Note that the asterisk \* is quoted from the shell in this example; this lets the command to include the files from subdirectories of Documentation/ directory.

git-add git-*.sh

Considers adding content from all git-*.sh scripts. Because this example lets shell expand the asterisk (i.e. you are listing the files explicitly), it does not consider subdir/

Interactive mode

When the command enters the interactive mode, it shows the output of the status subcommand, and then goes into its interactive command loop.

The command loop shows the list of subcommands available, and gives a prompt "What now> ". In general, when the prompt ends with a single >, you can pick only one of the choices given and type return, like this:

    *** Commands ***
      1: status       2: update       3: revert       4: add untracked
      5: patch        6: diff         7: quit         8: help
    What now> 1

You also could say "s" or "sta" or "status" above as long as the choice is unique.

The main command loop has 6 subcommands (plus help and quit).


This shows the change between HEAD and index (i.e. what will be committed if you say "git commit"), and between index and working tree files (i.e. what you could stage further before "git commit" using "git-add") for each path. A sample output looks like this:

              staged     unstaged path
     1:       binary      nothing foo.png
     2:     +403/-35        +1/-1 git-add--interactive.perl

It shows that foo.png has differences from HEAD (but that is binary so line count cannot be shown) and there is no difference between indexed copy and the working tree version (if the working tree version were also different, binary would have been shown in place of nothing). The other file, git-add—interactive.perl, has 403 lines added and 35 lines deleted if you commit what is in the index, but working tree file has further modifications (one addition and one deletion).


This shows the status information and gives prompt "Update>>". When the prompt ends with double >>, you can make more than one selection, concatenated with whitespace or comma. Also you can say ranges. E.g. "2-5 7,9" to choose 2,3,4,5,7,9 from the list. You can say * to choose everything.

What you chose are then highlighted with *, like this:

           staged     unstaged path
  1:       binary      nothing foo.png
* 2:     +403/-35        +1/-1 git-add--interactive.perl

To remove selection, prefix the input with - like this:

Update>> -2

After making the selection, answer with an empty line to stage the contents of working tree files for selected paths in the index.


This has a very similar UI to update, and the staged information for selected paths are reverted to that of the HEAD version. Reverting new paths makes them untracked.

add untracked

This has a very similar UI to update and revert, and lets you add untracked paths to the index.


This lets you choose one path out of status like selection. After choosing the path, it presents diff between the index and the working tree file and asks you if you want to stage the change of each hunk. You can say:

y - add the change from that hunk to index
n - do not add the change from that hunk to index
a - add the change from that hunk and all the rest to index
d - do not the change from that hunk nor any of the rest to index
j - do not decide on this hunk now, and view the next
    undecided hunk
J - do not decide on this hunk now, and view the next hunk
k - do not decide on this hunk now, and view the previous
    undecided hunk
K - do not decide on this hunk now, and view the previous hunk

After deciding the fate for all hunks, if there is any hunk that was chosen, the index is updated with the selected hunks.


This lets you review what will be committed (i.e. between HEAD and index).

See Also

gitlink:git-status[1] gitlink:git-rm[1] gitlink:git-mv[1] gitlink:git-commit[1] gitlink:git-update-index[1]


Written by Linus Torvalds <>


Documentation by Junio C Hamano and the git-list <>.


Part of the gitlink:git[7] suite